Are Genetically Modified Chickens on the Dinner Table?

by Project Censored
Published: Last Updated on

British scientists have developed genetically altered chickens that reportedly do not transmit bird flu to other chickens. Yet these chickens may still contract the sickness themselves. Yet by tampering with the DNA of the chicken, the safety of its meat for human consumption is called into question. The scientific literature remains mute on whether GM chickens will appear on your dinner table — or if they already have.

To stop the spread of the virus, scientists spliced a gene into the chicken’s DNA that produces a “decoy” molecule mimicking a central element of the bird flu virus. The decoy obstructs duplication of the virus, thus curbing transmission. With the success of the first GM chicken, scientists are now considering modification of the rest of the food chain. Indeed, researchers have pondered the creation of an array of disease free, genetically modified animals. Still, many scientists harbor reservations toward such research. For example, Peter Bradnock of The British Poultry Council says that more research is needed to understand the long-term health impact of such practices. “We have to have a big debate as to whether society wants to have GM animals even for this very good potential benefit,” he told BBC News.

In fact, compelling scientific studies have already revealed the impact of human health from consuming generically modified organisms. Numerous studies, including an important paper published in the International Journal of Biological Sciences, have established the hazards of ingesting GM ingredients. The researchers discovered that the organs that typically react to chemical food poisoning were the first to face problems after research subjects ate GM foods. The researchers urged that GM foods not be openly available on supermarket shelves.


Article Title: GM Chicken – Scientists Create Flu-Resistant Chickens That May End Up On Your Dinner Table,”, February 13, 2011
Author: Anthony Gucciard

Article Title: GM Chickens Created That Could Prevent the Spread of Bird Flu, January 13, 2011, UK Guardian
Author: Alok Jha

Article Title: Organic Chickens Are Genetically different from conventional chickens,” February 18, 2010,
Author: Ethan Huff
Student Researcher: Lamise Mansur, Florida Atlantic University
Faculty Advisor: James F. Tracy, Florida Atlantic University